O Rungreza ~ Episode 3 Review

Lovers are like moths drawn to the flame. Closer and closer they fly in to the welcoming warm glow, unrealizing their singed wings till too late. Then, forgotten is the flight of the free and all that remains is a shell of their former self. It is the same story repeated over and over, as if on rote, but such is the lure that lovers forget all in their frenzied rush for union.  Innumerable poets have exalted the ecstasy and agony of love, but only those truly affected understand the highest of highs and depths of despair, and recognize the signs in those similarly affected. Ask Mammo.

Mumtaz may flit around like a ghost, unseen, unheard, unacknowledged, by those who count in the household, but that does not make her blind to what’s happening around her. If Sassi is her daughter, then Qasim is someone she swore to look over, and that she will do – come what may. Her heartbreak, over ordering Qasim to leave the house, spoke to not only how much she understood his plight but also pointed to the depth of her own pain and humiliation. Why would she wish a similar plight for someone she loves like her own. Sassi may be her daughter, but she is first her father’s daughter, and Mammo would never ever want Qasim to suffer anywhere near as much as her.

And because she has loved, truly and fully, Mammo understands well the difference between dil ki lagi and dillagi, that which Khayyam and Sonya are playing at and that which she dismisses with a smile as dil ko behlana. Khayyam may call her jaahil, but this girl is definitely not dumb. She is smarter than all put together, her conversations with bua are testimony to the fact. I love how Kariman bua acts as Mammo’s inner voice, their exchanges more like dialogues with self.

For his part, Khayyam is a man who thinks writing about love makes him an expert on the subject, but has he ever really plumbed the depth of his words? Methinks not. Had he truly understood love he wouldn’t have needed someone else to point out that love is love, irrespective of whether the beloved is a shining star or a dull housewife? That Khayyam is caught up in the superficial points to how much more he is yet to learn, or unlearn as the case may be. Borrow a leaf or two from Mammo’s book, or perhaps Qasim’s even?

Qasim’s breakdown with Sassi was pitch perfect, tension building up till it could be contained no more. His breakdown signalled not his loss of control but more like him having finally reconciled with his feelings for Sassi. He now knew and understood Mammo better, got what she was trying to accomplish by sending him away. He had to get away before he too got his wings singed and lost the ability to fly. Flames have that quality, their glow so magnetic the moth stands no chance, none at all. Blindly it keeps flying into the fire. Can Qasim look away before it is too late?

Sassi is the proverbial beloved. Beautiful but cruel to the point of enjoying the pain she wittingly and unwittingly inflicts. Though still too young to fully understand her power she is old enough to understand the seduction of said power. She enjoys her hold over Qasim and is none too pleased when she sees others trying to catch his eye. Had she been older she would’ve given him just enough to keep him hanging but she’s not there yet. The games she’s playing in trying to set her father up with Sonya, her bright eyed look when she walked in on a shooting and then the little dance movement – all point to Sassi coming of age – very soon. God help every one around her then. But she’s not there yet.

For now, that Qasim is actually contemplating walking out on her has shaken Sassi to the core. But then she would not be her father’s daughter if she showed vulnerability, and so she fights with him. Forcing him to retaliate, beg for her forgiveness, but he does none of that. He walks away. Whether he can stay away is the question.

All in all this was yet another fantabulous episode of O Rungreza. There is so much to be mined here, be it visually, textually or subtextually. Saji Gul’s writing is the real star of the show, a star made that much brighter by a director with an artist’s mind and poet’s heart. Kashif Nisar has done a brilliant job translating a very complex text on to the screen, such that all layers of meaning are not only preserved but actually enhanced.  The actors are all at the top of their game making it hard to pick one over the other.

Nauman Ijaz brings Khayyam to life like no other. No one else could have done justice to man as cruel as he is eager to please. Rushing to bring water for his thristy beloved but treating his wife like a disposable tissue, useful only when needed and then easily discarded. Irsa Ghazal is maginificent as Mammo. Sajal Aly is Sassi to a Tee, a girl who is a ticking time bomb. God help those who are around when she lets loose. Bilal Abbas Khan is so very impressive as the awkward, sincere Bilal. He has put in a lot of work to make Qasim believable, giving him softness but yet hinting at an inner strength waiting to be tapped. Sana Fakhar’s Sonya is yet to come into her own. Also deserving of acknowledgment are the editors and the people in charge of the background music – well done guys. Also the DoP, lighting, set design – everything is coming together really well.

All in all well done Team O Rungreza – taaliyan!

Written by SZ~

8 replies

  1. Hey SZ
    Qasim kyoon chalaa gaya? 😢
    I guess u r right , Mammo wouldn’t want Qasim to suffer the way she does so best he goes.
    Loved the flirting at the dye shop , so cute.


    • Hello Hello! Haha! Kahan gaya? He’s back, next week, sucker that he is for Sassi’s daants! But I do hope he keeps away from here and go find someone else who respects him a bit more – those two aunties for instance!

      Yes, that was a fun scene. I loved how that guy went from aunty to baji in a flash and then he got schooled by that girl! maza agaya!


  2. Excellent review. As always!

    This episode was quite the surprise! I was not expecting Qasim to get thrown out of the house just yet, and certainly not by Mammo. Those two are kindred spirits, and each understands the other’s pain so well that he was practically on his way out even before she actually told him to leave.

    Mammo is such a fascinating character. She’s so perceptive and aware of the world and people around her, but she’s also so self-effacing that she’s decided she can survive on the mere scraps of affection she gets from Khayyam and Sassi. It will be ironic when Sonya Jehan becomes the reason Mammo asserts herself again, I think.

    That bit where Qasim works out that random girls find him attractive so maybe he has worth? It was both funny and sort of sad. Really well played by Bilal Abbas too.


    • Thank you, RK 🙂

      Haina! I too am enjoying the unexpected here. From the precap it seems like Qasim is back, but why would he return after such a firm and final goodbye? Love how we are being kept hooked here!

      Re: Mammo, it will be interesting to see what shakes her out of her present resigned state of being, but going by what little we have seen of her I dont think it will be Sonya and her connection to Khayyam as much as it will be Sassi’s connection to Sonya Jahan. There is something to be said for a mother’s protective instinct where she will do anything and everything to protect her child. Lets see how it all unfolds.

      Bilal is fabulous here!


  3. Taaliyaan.

    Bilkul. Bilkul

    Another splendid viewing. Love the pace at which the story is progressing as well (fingers crossed, it stays that way throughout too); it doesn’t dwell on one character or situation and provides a well-rounded scenario.
    Sanaa’s Sonya Jehan kind of growing on me now.

    That tone/andaz of Mumtaz, I mentioned in my last comments on episode 2, seems to have been gone all of a sudden in that scene with Qasim. I thought, ‘Ah, it went the same way by many who venture to try a particular accent in a serial’, only to see it disappear after the first few. But it was back at the end of the episode. Unsure as to where I stand with that.

    Barring this little (unnecessary) peeve of mine, another excellent episode.


    • @Arisha: So, I was thinking about your comment when watching and methinks ke it is in keeping with the characters, her repression is conveyed through her dabbi hui awaaz and neechi nazrein ..its like how abuse victims don a whole other persona, wearing a camaflogue of sorts, even multiple personalities you could say, but when she is forced into a corner then it all comes out in a rush .. she was like a whole other person when begging, pleading scolding Qasim all at the same time – fab fab stuff btw – and I think this hints at a very diff person lurking under this bechari demeanor.. I think I had sad earlier that I am waiting to see Mammo’s back story. I have a feeling that she is not as jaahil as Khayyam would have us think and I would not be surprised to find out that she too had once been as vibrant and colorful as Sonya or even her daughter, who I think takes on after her older self.. Khayyam seems like a man who covets glittery things only to throw them in a corner and forget abt them once they become his.. will be interesting to see how his relatoinship with Sonya progresses.


    • Uff, yeh Mai nai Kia Kia!?

      I read your review, after posting my comments – as I was facing similar issues with the page as before – wrote them on a note pad and copy pasted them to save time. Episode Tu Dekh hi li thee.

      Never again.
      My my!!!

      The review is poetry in itself. Behtareen. Wah wah. Outdoing Khayyam himself, might I add. Thoroughly enjoyed it. Maza aa Gaya.


      • @Arisha G: Adab 🙂 Thank you ke you came back, and that too just for tareefing the review .. bohot shukriya.. and us se bhi bara shukriya ke you thought I was better than Khayyam – yes!! #LifeMade


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